Person Centred - empathy
Congruence & Kindness,
Mind & Body Connection
Mindfulness & Meditation
Roots & Belonging
A man named Carl Rogers developed the Person Centred approach to counselling. He believed that humans have an innate and natural tendency to grow towards health and fulfil their highest potential, he called this Self-actualization.
Rogers discovered that when people received the right relational conditions they would naturally grow towards health and self-actualisation. These core relational conditions are; Unconditional Positive Regard, Congruence and Empathy.
As mammals we are neurologically wired to connect with other human beings in a way that feels safe, kind and honest, so receiving these qualities of experience supports our health.
Many people within our society grow up within environments that didn't provide these core conditions that support health. As mammals we need to feel safe, seen, heard and felt by at least one other human being. If we chronically don't have these core needs and conditions met, our mammalian heart and brain will naturally feel this as a trauma and our nervous system will react appropriately, with symptoms such as feeling separate from other people and the world around us, isolation, feeling chronic stress, agitation, anxiety, depression, overwhelm, self hated, phobias, addictions are just a few.
I see the person centred approach as profoundly reparative. I value this approach because it's aligned with conditions of heath, these core conditions along with the presence of another human being, who has your back, can bring about deep transformation and growth.
Neuroscience is a study of the nervous system and how our biology relates to the world within and around us. In
recent years the field of neuroscience has discovered that we have three brains, these are in the head, heart and guts. The three brains, all work together as part of our nervous system, integrating our mind, body and feelings into one complete interconnected system.
I value the Polyvagal theory and this approach to counselling because it reveals how important it is, to include an awareness of our thoughts, body sensations and feelings within the therapeutic counselling process. Opening to awareness of these different yet completely interconnected aspects of our being is both integrating and healing.
The Polyvagal theory is a practical road map of how our autonomic nervous system responds to life's experiences. And it offers practical and approachable ways to restore health and well being.
The field of interpersonal neuroscience, is discovering how profoundly relationships impact our nervous system and overall health.
Dr Daniel Seigel a clinical professor of psychiatry said "Our relationships to one another are not a casual part of our lives, they are fundamental to how our minds function and are an essential aspect of brain health. Our social connections to one another shape our neural connections, that form the structure of the brain. This means that, the very way we communicate alters the very circuitry of our brain, especially in ways that keep our lives in balance."
With so many people in our society feeling isolated and without support. Therefore the therapeutic counselling relationship, can offer a deeply restorative pathway towards health.
The trans-personal is that which is beyond the limits of personal identity. An aware intelligence that's within everything that exists.
I perceive this as our spiritual nature, a ground of our being. Our truest nature never changes and can never be harmed by the chaos and traumas of our lives. Beyond religion or spiritual doctrines we can access this deepest part of our nature in so many diverse and rich ways.
Mindfulness and meditation are the primary ways that people can connect with this deeper aspect of themselves. The value of this is endless...
Mindfulness is a way of slowing down, of focusing attention upon something, to become more conscious and aware. It's a way to come into the present moment and to feel an intimacy with that which is focused upon.
There are many ways to work with mindfulness practices. We can work with mindfully with our body-sense and develop an awareness of our bodies wisdom. Through this practice we can learn to support undigested pain, then integrate experiences to bring resolution.
Meditation can awaken our deeper spiritual nature. It's a practice that nourishes wellness and inner peace. It fosters self awareness, insight and connection ourselves, life and others.
With simple meditation practices like focusing upon the breath, we can cultivate more inner peace, kindness and feeling connection with life
Our busy modern lives are often filled with stress and anxiety, while the sense of not enough hours in the day, is common. As many of us anxiously try to find fulfillment, in an endless pursuit of self improvement or consumerism. Our essential human needs for place, connection, community and belonging go generally unfulfilled.
In a society that values individuality, viewing other people and the natural world as separate. We often get cut of from our primary sources of health. If we are cut of from each other, our roots and the natural rhythms of life? It's natural to feel like we are lacking something and It's natural to feel stressed, anxious or depressed when we are living in such conditions. As these conditions aren't aligned with the way we've organically evolved to live.
In reality we don't exist in separation from one another or the natural world. We are deeply immersed within the much larger and interconnected vitality of life.
We exist as part of the living earth, with it's abundance of living water, air, sun, plants, trees and creatures. We are apart of a vast and interconnected vitality. A web of life, where all is interdependent upon each other.
As a society we are moving further away from a grounded sense of connection with each other and the natural world. I believe this disconnection is registered by our bodies and biology as a trauma.
My approach to ecotherapy aims to guide people to reconnect with the living vitality within themselves and the natural world. While developing a relationship with nature that is meaningful and mutually beneficial. As I believe this is a primary source of our health.